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Group Lotus to become Renault title sponsors

Discussion in 'Formula 1' started by Suomalainen, Dec 8, 2010.

  1. The Renault team are set to become known as Lotus Renault GP next season after agreeing a title-sponsorship deal with Group Lotus that will run until 2017. Following the return of the Lotus name to Formula One in 2010, under licence from Group Lotus to Lotus Racing, the announcement marks the complete return of the British sportscar manufacturer to the sport, with the full backing of parent company Proton.

    Group Lotus will also become major equity partners in the Renault team with current owners Genii Capital, as part of a strategic alliance between the two companies that will provide Group Lotus with significant technological and commercial opportunities for its range of road cars. Renault will continue to support the team as a supplier of engines and technological and engineering expertise.

    “We are delighted that we can now go public with the news that we will be racing as Lotus Renault GP in 2011,” commented Gerard Lopez, Chairman of the Renault team. “It is extremely exciting to begin a new era for the team in partnership with Group Lotus, and we will continue to enjoy a strong relationship with Renault over the coming seasons. It is a tribute to the excellent work this year by the team in Enstone that we have been able to attract both major sponsorship and new investment for a very bright future.”

    Group Lotus CEO Dany Bahar said: “I can think of no better platform for automotive brand communications than motorsport and F1 is the very pinnacle of open-wheel racing. We’re well aware that there has been a lot of controversy around the usage of our brand in F1 and I’m delighted to be able to formally clarify our position once and for all: we are Lotus and we are back.”

    The new partnership has been enabled by French car giant Renault selling its remaining shares in the team to Genii Capital. Group Lotus will subsequently become co-owner of the team with Genii Capital. They will continue to compete with the Renault chassis name and Renault will enjoy pre-eminent brand exposure on the car.

    For 2011, the team plan to race in a new interpretation of the iconic black and gold colours that were last used when Lotus and Renault joined forces in the 1980s. This livery has been on the drawing board for over two months in order to reinterpret its iconic graphic signature to suit modern media requirements.

    Lotus Racing, Tony Fernandes’ Malaysian-backed squad that returned the Lotus name to Formula One under license this season, will continue to compete next year, switching from Cosworth to Renault power. The 2011 championship entry list published by the FIA last week listed them under the team name of Team Lotus.
  2. You have got to be kidding me...
  3. Sorry, but.... No! I'm serious.
  4. This sounds great in a way that Lotus have someone backing them up now and they might be able to do something with some extra money. (more upgraded parts for example)
  5. It's not like that at all, Georgios. From what I have read, this is a separate entity run by Group Lotus (different from Lotus Racing, which competed this past season). This is simply the Lotus car-maker piggybacking on the Renault team... and I have reason to believe there's a bit of bitterness involved over the Lotus name ownership debate.
  6. Oh this is then sad news. :(
  7. Bram

    Administrator Staff Premium

    Let's hope that a third team will be sponsored by John Player Special to make the confusion even bigger. Strange world F1 is :)
  8. For 2011, the Lotus Renault GP cars will race in a ‘new interpretation’ of the iconic black and gold colours that were last used when Lotus and Renault joined forces in the 1980s.

    Where this leaves Tony Fernandes’ Team Lotus, which is also planning to use the famous ‘John Player’ livery in 2011, as well as Renault engines, is unknown. The dispute between Team Lotus and Group Lotus is currently due to go before the High Court in London next year.
  9. Ross Balfour

    Ross Balfour
    #99 | Roaring Pipes Maniacs

    Lotus Renault GP and Renault Lotus GP, I'm getting dizzy just thinking about it
  10. XD Sounds like a joke, but it's nowasays reality...
  11. And imagine what'll happen if they'll still have Lada as a sponsor?:D Renault 3 in 1!
  12. I think this is awesome news. I don't much care for the new lotus team I don't think they should of ever been aloud to use the lotus name in the first place there not even British as a fan of f1 for 28 years i think it is a joke. but now with the way it has been done with Renault is a good thing as well as the hole team is based in the Uk and lets face it British engineering in motor sport is world leading I cant wait to see it going round the track. as for lotus using the JPS on there car it would not have been done as tabaco advertising in f1 is band. bring on 2011
  13. Hannu Karesola

    Hannu Karesola
    Roaring Pipes Maniacs Premium

    For me the only Lotus team is the Fernandes one. They really have put a lot of love to the team this year and the spirit seems to be awesome. Now Proton has come and stole their idea of black and gold coloured car etc. Well Team Lotus reacted and made a quick fan poll in a Gascoynes twitter tonight and it seems Team lotus are staying British Racing Green next year if they do what fans voted. That's great imo.

    My opinion is that because of Bahar's big ego Proton uses all it's money (if there's something left) to Renault team. The car company then falls in hands of Fernandes and this years team Renault is dead. Suddenly Fernandes then owns a Lotus road cars and the F1 team. Big boys game. :)

    If someone is using twitter and is not yet following Tony Fernandes, Mike Gascoyne or Kovalainen, go and follow them if you are interested. They are pretty active and give much info about what's going on with Team Lotus.
  14. This situation is ridiculous (perfect F1)!

    I can't say I am a huge fan of Air Asia (Team Lotus) yet, but they bought the naming rights from David Hunt. The same naming rights he bought when the Lotus team collapsed in 1994. Lotus cars was never part of Team Lotus (Colin Chapman kept them seperate for a reason).

    So for Proton to now say they are the 'real Team Lotus' in F1 is kind of smoke and mirrors. They should have bought the naming rights from Hunt in the first place - as I too would have prefered the Lotus team to have its genetics in the UK.

    F1 - you couldn't make it up :D.
  15. Fully agree with you, Hannu!
    But... maybe.... Let Proton take "Lotus" back and choke on that! :)
    Green Air Asia Renault with one of the flyin' finns Heikki at the wheel, and Tony with all of his guyz... It's not so bad to my mind.
    The main things are sincerity and the truth, but not the team's name.

    By the way... Hannu, could you give some links to people...?! It would be useful.
  16. Hannu Karesola

    Hannu Karesola
    Roaring Pipes Maniacs Premium

    That's also an acceptable way to go forward. :)
  17. Let's imagine who can take seats of Proton's Lotus Renault at 2011...
    Maybe.... Robert & Kimi?!
  18. Yup, is going to be crazy with all the Lotus you Lotus me issue :) ... they were gone from F1 and now they come back strong :) ... hope they solve the name thing because is not going to be a easy task.
    The good part is that is happening and that is good for F1. Lotus what??? Lotus Who??
    Lotus War !!! ... nice
  19. I'll be supporting Team Lotus (Fernandes). Yes, they are not the 'old Lotus' we know and love from F1 glory days, but neither is Group Lotus and Team Lotus does take care of the spirit of Old Lotus.

    Lotus Cars and Lotus racing have always been very seperate entities. Fernandes acquired the right to use Lotus name from the Lotus racing days. Now Proton with their Lotus cars is claiming the name, looks like they're just jealous lol

    Lotus for me is about passion, history, and a going against the grain spirit.
    Team Lotus, while not the 'old' Lotus seem to try genuinly to keep in line with the 'old' F1 lotus team tradition. Their factory is based in the same town as the 'old' oneTeam Lotus carries that heritage imo, building a team from the ground up with her own philosophy.
    Group Lotus buying already well established Renault is just a lame way to get your name on an f1 car, all about marketing and corporate PR, Not about a passion for racing.

    While a pretty petty move by Group Lotus to not only buy the right to put their name on a Ranault car (which let's be honest is all this is) AND 'steal' the black/gold livery idea which Team Lotus had already announced they would use in '11, it can be pretty cool to have two Lotus teams on the grid (two Lotus-Renaults in fact with Team Lotus' recent engine deal with Renault in mind lol). We have two Red Bull teams, so why not. Just hope their liveries won't be too identical. I'm already having trouble distinguishing a redbull from a toro rosso at first glance :D
  20. A guy on F1 Fanatic has prepared a flowchart of this situation...